If you can’t resist a shortcut, you’re not alone. Cutting corners is practically as American as apple pie.
We always seem to have too much to do and not enough time to do it. Which is probably why so many of us end up skipping breakfast, or doing the bare minimum. A cup of coffee and you’re out the door.
And sure, when you skip you are saving a little time. But this is a penny wise pound foolish situation. Because there’s plenty of evidence the old saying about breakfast being the most important meal of the day, is true.
Skipping breakfast sends stroke risk soaring
Shortcutting your morning meal can cause real harm.
One study found folks who regularly skip breakfast have a higher risk of heart disease and are 20 percent more likely to suffer a stroke, for example. Other research found skipping breakfast could lead to insulin resistance, putting you at a high risk for heart problems and diabetes.
Breakfast lovers, on the other hand, reap bunches of health benefits.
I’ll have more on those rewards in just a moment. But first let’s take a quick look at the latest study to show how important a robust morning meal is.
A hearty breakfast leads to better blood sugar
The new study was presented at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society earlier this year. Researchers reported eating a hearty, healthy breakfast helped overweight folks with type 2 diabetes have better blood sugar control and lose weight.
And according to scientists, it turns out it’s all about the timing.
For the study, volunteers followed one of two different diets which had them eating the same amount of calories for three months.
- Half of the dieters had a large breakfast, medium sized lunch and a small dinner every day.
- The other half ate the traditional diabetic diet of six small meals spaced evenly throughout the day.
At the end of the study, the hearty breakfast folks had shed 11 pounds. But the six meals a day group had gained three. The big breakfast eaters also had far bigger improvements in their fasting glucose and overall blood sugar levels.
And best of all they needed significantly less insulin.
The researchers say our metabolism changes throughout the day. So making breakfast your biggest meal of the day could help you balance your blood sugar. And like the volunteers that can lead to less carb cravings, less overeating and less of you.
Breakfast eaters are healthier
But those aren’t the only reasons to avoid downsizing your morning meals. There are some other BIG benefits to eating a BIG but healthy breakfast.
1. Better short-term memory:
Don’t give in to “senior moments” simply because you’re getting older. Fight back with breakfast.
A study out of France found that a good morning meal helps with recall and short-term memory. The key, though, is to make it a healthy one. High carb bread bombs actually had the opposite effect.
If your memory has been sketchy, think high protein such as eggs and Greek yogurt.
2. Healthier cholesterol:
A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, confirmed that blood sugar is more stable in breakfast eaters. But that wasn’t all.
The researchers also found folks who started their day with some kind of meal had better overall cholesterol numbers, as well.
3. Proper nutrition:
Our nutritional needs change as we age. And our bodies can become less efficient at absorbing the nutrients we need.
That’s why seniors have to be especially careful about avoiding vitamin, mineral and protein deficiencies. And loading up in the morning with a hearty meal is one of the best ways to avoid falling short.
According to researchers at Rush University, people who eat breakfast are significantly more likely to meet their nutritional recommendations over the course of the day, especially when it comes to calcium, protein and fiber.
You don’t have to have a three course meal or complicated meal to eat well in the morning. But downing a cup of coffee alone won’t cut it.
Take the time to eat something hearty and high protein. And you’ll be rewarded with high energy, healthy blood sugars and a supercharged metabolism all day long.